MARTIN, Tenn. – A pair of big innings by the visiting squad hampered the University of Tennessee at Martin baseball team on Friday afternoon, as the Skyhawks dropped game one against Ohio Valley Conference rival Austin Peay, 19-4.
The Governors (19-20, 10-11 OVC) were the first on the board, tallying four runs in the second inning off of UT Martin starting pitcher Winston Cannon. As was the theme almost all day, Austin Peay built the 4-0 advantage scoring all four runs with two outs in the inning.
UT Martin (18-22, 7-12 OVC) bounced back in the third inning to pull the game within two as Mansfield, Texas native Creighton Eldridge sent his sixth homer of the season deep over the left field wall to trim the margin to 4-1. Freshman Connor Aube brought home the second run of the inning with an RBI-fielder’s choice to get the lead back to just two for the Governors.
Austin Peay broke the game open in the next frame tacking on five more runs to give the visiting team a 9-2 lead. The Skyhawks responded in the bottom of the fourth with a solo homer from senior Dan Kerwin to lead off the inning. It was the Bradenton, Fla. native’s third big fly on the year.
After a four-run inning from the Governors in the seventh, UT Martin pushed across their final run of the contest on Eldridge’s second RBI on the day, as his single into right field brought home Tanner Wessling. In total, Eldridge now has 23 RBI’s in his first season as a Skyhawk.
Austin Peay followed the inning by scoring six more runs in the final two frames to claim the victory in game one 19-4. Cannon (4-3) tossed 6.1 innings while striking out seven along the way. Josh Rye (6-1) recorded the win for the Governors.
At the plate, Eldridge (2-4, two RBI’s) notched a multi-hit performance, while Wessling (2-3, one run) extended his season high hitting streak to 15 games.
These two team will play a doubleheader tomorrow morning beginning at 11 a.m. Game three will start approximately thirty minutes after the conclusion of game two. Weather permitting, game one will be available to watch on the OVC Digital Network.